(GPCR)The receptor for TSH receptor (TSHR), a G protein coupled receptor (GPCR), is of particular interest as the primary antigen in autoimmune hyperthyroidism (Graves’ disease) caused by stimulating TSHR antibodies. To date, only one domain of the extracellular region of the TSHR has been crystallized. We have run a 1000 ns molecular dynamic simulation on a model of the entire TSHR generated by merging the extracellular region of the receptor, obtained using artificial intelligence, with our recent homology model of the transmembrane domain, embedded it in a lipid membrane and solvated it with water and counterions. The simulations showed that the structure of the transmembrane and leucine-rich domains were remarkably constant while the linker region (LR), known more commonly as the ‘hinge region,’ showed significant flexibility, forming several transient secondary structural elements. Furthermore, the relative orientation of the leucine-rich domain with the rest of the receptor was also seen to be variable. These data suggest that this LR is an intrinsically disordered protein. Furthermore, preliminary data simulating the full TSHR model complexed with its ligand (TSH) showed that (a) there is a strong affinity between the LR and TSH ligand and (b) the association of the LR and the TSH ligand reduces the structural fluctuations in the LR. This full-length model illustrates the importance of the LR in responding to ligand binding and lays the foundation for studies of pathologic TSHR autoantibodies complexed with the TSHR to give further insight into their interaction with the flexible LR.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere81415
StatePublished - 2022


Dive into the research topics of 'Computational model of the full-length TSH receptor'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this